Can the Police Give You a Ticket If Snow Covers Your State License Plate?
ARE SNOW-COVERED LICENSE PLATES ILLEGAL IN WASHINGTON?
Did you stop to consider if having snow covering up your state license plate could possibly get you a ticket?
All this snow on the roads is for the birds!
Unless you have a 4WD type of car, it's no fun to be driving out in this mess. You have to be concerned with other drivers on the road, shoveling your driveway and sidewalks, and keeping your headlights on even in the daytime.
I considered this question myself the first day we had a big dump of snow in Yakima. I was so concerned about getting snowflakes off the windshield and windows that I had overlooked clearing the area around my license plate, too.
WHAT WASHINGTON STATE LAW SAYS ABOUT SNOW-COVERED LICENSE PLATES
Washington state law says all drivers must keep their license plates clear, even if it snows!
Washington state law, RCW 46.16A.200,states:
"(5)(a) Display. License plates must be:
(iii) Kept clean and be able to be plainly seen and read at all times..."
So the answer to the question above is, YES, your state license plate must be kept cleaned off (with snow, ice, dirt, mud, etc.) at all times.
In some states, it's even illegal to drive with snow ON your car altogether!
I am so thankful that is not the law here in Washington because at only 5' 6", I'm not tall enough to reach the snow on the top of our Townsquare Media company car! Ha!
FAIR WARNING: CLEAR OFF THAT SNOW
License plates have to be clear. Make sure you have an unobstructed license plate if you are driving around in Washington state!